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Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Convenes Key Stakeholders to Advance National Dialogue on Early Education; Launches Conversations on Early Learning Symposium Series

Washington, D.C. – Global learning company Houghton Mifflin Harcourt (HMH) today will gather early learning stakeholders and experts to advance the national dialogue around the fundamental role of quality early childhood education in ensuring long-term success and equal opportunity for all learners, regardless of background. The convening marks the launch of Conversations on Early Learning: Inform. Inspire.  Act. — a series of quarterly symposia designed to foster dynamic collaboration within the early education space. 

More than 70 key stakeholders from myriad disciplines and organizations, including the National Head Start Association, the US Department of Education, the National Association for the Education of Young Children and the Joan Ganz Cooney Center at the Sesame Workshop, will assemble at the National Geographic Society for today’s inaugural event, which will feature a moderated panel and town hall-style discussion.

Panelists will include leading experts Dr. Barbara Landau, Director, Science of Learning Institute, Johns Hopkins University; Maurice Sykes, Executive Direction of the Early Childhood Leadership Institute at the University of the District of Columbia’s Center for Children; Dr. Susan Canizares, Chief Academic Officer of Learning Care Group; Patti Miller, Director of the Too Small to Fail Initiative for the Clinton Foundation; and Dana Oltchick Lundy, Executive Director of the New England Head Start Association.

“The science is definitive – children are born learning, and meaningful early education experiences are crucial for future success in the classroom and beyond,” said Linda Zecher, CEO, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, who will provide opening remarks at the event.  “We’re a diverse and rich community, and the Conversations series allows us to bring all of these voices to the table in order to develop a holistic, informed vision for action that ensures that young learners have what they need and deserve to thrive.” 

HMH participated in and was inspired by the Obama administration’s Invest In US Summit on Early Learning at the White House last year, which served as an important catalyst for the convening. Under the leadership of Susan Magsamen, Senior Vice President for Early Learning, HMH resolved to build a connected community of stakeholders focused on bridging the gap between early learning research and practice and prioritizing opportunities for the nation’s youngest learners.  

 “We’re thrilled to participate in today’s inaugural Conversations in Early Learning event to discuss the many and specific ways the early childhood community can collectively work together to ensure all parents can provide their children with the strong start they need to succeed in school and in life,” said Patti Miller, Director of the Too Small to Fail Initiative for the Bill, Hillary & Chelsea Clinton Foundation.

“Houghton Mifflin Harcourt and the dozens of other public and private partners of the Invest In US campaign are contributing toward new efforts across the country that will bring more children a critical opportunity for success in school and in life,” said First Five Years Fund Executive Director Kris Perry.  “Today, too many children in America enter kindergarten each year without the important skills they need to succeed, simply because they lack access to high-quality early childhood education.  That’s why government at all levels, business leaders, philanthropy and the early childhood community must come together and continue to make investments that give all kids a strong start.”

HMH will share insights from the symposia with the greater early learning community through ongoing blog posts, expert interviews and video highlights on hmhco.com. The series will nurture multidisciplinary partnerships and leverage creative thinking throughout 2015 in order to introduce a national framework of actionable guidelines, rooted in brain science research and proven pedagogy, that can serve as a beacon for the development of future early learning initiatives.

The next Conversations on Early Learning event is scheduled for June 7 in New Orleans, ahead of the National Institute for Early Childhood Professional Development.  

Please visit www.hmhco.com/educators/hmh-early-learning for updates on the series. 


About Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt (NASDAQ:HMHC) is a global learning company dedicated to changing people’s lives by
fostering passionate, curious learners. As a leading provider of pre-K–12 education content, services, and cutting-edge technology solutions across a variety of media, HMH enables learning in a changing landscape. HMH is uniquely positioned to create engaging and effective educational content and experiences from early childhood to beyond the classroom.  HMH serves more than 50 million students in over 150 countries worldwide, while its award-winning children’s books, novels, non-fiction, and reference titles are enjoyed by readers throughout the world. For more information, visit 

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